Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Hoyas Drop the Ball Against Dukes

Duquesne’s defense nabbed three throws by Georgetown quarterbacks on Saturday afternoon.

Hoya receivers caught just two.

It was a painful start to a two-game road trip for the Georgetown football team. The Hoyas were pummeled on offense, defense and special teams in a 45-7 loss to former Metro-Atlantic Athletic Conference rival Duquesne in Pittsburgh.

“We were outplayed, outmuscled, outcoached,” Head Coach Bob Benson said. “It was a tough day, and it was my fault.”

The Hoyas (1-2, 0-1 Patriot) committed eight turnovers total – five fumbles in addition to three interceptions, leading to 31 points for the Dukes.

Sophomore Keith Allan, in just his second collegiate start, completed just one of 10 pass attempts and fumbled twice. After Allan’s third pick late in the third quarter, which the Dukes returned 46 yards to go up 38-7, sophomore Nick Cangelosi came in off the bench to play out the game. Cangelosi, seeing his first action in blue and gray since transferring from North Carolina State over the summer, recorded just one completion in five attempts.

In spite of all that went wrong, junior Kim Sarin rushed for his second 100-yard game of the season, though he coughed up the ball once. It was his first outing of the year with less than 20 carries. Junior Michael Ononibaku, named last week’s conference defensive player of the week, led the team with two sacks and three tackles for loss.

Duquesne sophomore James Jacobs ran for a career-high 186 yards on 25 carries. Jacobs, who was named MAAC offensive player of the week on Monday, recorded 98 yards on the ground in the first half alone.

Senior quarterback and co-captain Niel Loebig bolstered the Dukes’ passing attack, completing 17-of-23 for 206 yards and three touchdowns, each to a different receiver.

Junior cornerback Michael Ford also had a big afternoon, earning league defensive player of the week accolades. Ford returned an interception for a touchdown, forced two fumbles, recovered a fumble and added five tackles.

“I told our kids after the game, `You stunned me,'” Duquesne Head Coach Greg Gattuso said on the Duquesne athletics department Web site. “We played with a lot of heart today . we did it at Holy Cross and we did it today.”

The game marked the Dukes’ second win in as many contests against Patriot League opponents. Duquesne (2-1, 0-0 MAAC) takes on Fordham next weekend in the Bronx, N.Y., and closes out the season playing host to Bucknell on Nov. 20.

The Dukes marched 73 yards for a touchdown on their opening drive, aided by a defensive pass interference penalty on third-and-long near midfield. After that, Duquesne never looked back, hesitating only momentarily when Georgetown senior linebacker Jason Carter picked off a Loebig pass just inside Duke territory and returned it to the 27-yard line. The Hoyas narrowed the margin to 14-7 five plays later on a seven-yard run by Sarin, but could not break into the red zone again until late in the third, by which point the Dukes had gained a 45-7 advantage.

The Hoyas might have had an opportunity to bounce back from a 17-7 halftime deficit, but two completions for 39 and 21 yards, respectively, late in the second quarter led Duquesne to the end zone and gave them a 24-7 edge at the break. Additionally, the Hoyas turned over the ball on their first four possessions on the second half, effectively halting any chance of a comeback.

The Dukes added three more touchdowns in the third quarter for good measure.

“It can’t get any worse,” Benson said, adding that next week’s opponent, Colgate, is “certainly not feeling sorry for us.”

The 12th-ranked Red Raiders (1-1, 0-0 Patriot) play host to the Hoyas next Saturday. Colgate defeated Georgetown in the final seconds of last season’s opener to steal a 20-19 victory from the clutches of the Hoyas.

Kickoff at Schoellkopf Field in Hamilton, N.Y., will be at 1 p.m.

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